Finding calm in the chaos

Finding calm in the chaos

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

a messy endeavor

Mealtime is a messy endeavor. Awhile ago, a reader commented that I was brave in not putting a bib on Sam. Sam likes to explore his food, not just eat it. He likes to chew it up, spit it out, rub it in between his hands, dry those same hands on his hair.

It's not that I'm brave. I just feel like putting a bib on Sam is...well, like putting a BandAid on a gushing artery. The front of his shirt is clean...but nothing else is.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

love affair

Sam has a love affair with sticks. Sticks of any shape or size. Actually, the longer and more likely to inflict injury on himself or bystanders, the better.I lump this love affair into the category of "Things I Do Not Understand About Raising a BoyChild." The category grows bigger by the day.Also included in this category: why Sam must dip his hand in the dog water and then lick it.

Friday, November 20, 2009

reading books


Sam loves to read books first thing in the morning when he gets up. Also, when he goes to bed. And, any moment in between.

He signs what the characters are doing and makes animal noises when he sees any animals. I'm sorry, but I just think this is so freakin' adorable. And, no, I am not biased and, no, I don't think it will give him a big head because I say this all the time.

Well, maybe his head is kind of big. He can wear the same size hat as Joe. But, Joe has a small head.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

marriage is compromise

Marriage is about compromise. Meeting in the middle. Reaching a win-win solution. I think our dogs nicely illustrate this fact.

After we miscarried our first baby, my grandparents mentioned some friends were raising Brittany puppies. I wanted one so badly, so Joe said yes. Altmiller dogs live inside, sleep on beds, eat table scraps, and are considered adopted family members. Kaufman dogs live outside, perform functions (like bird hunting), and live a farm life. We thought we'd reach a happy compromise somehow with Schatzi.

Eventually, Schatzi needed a friend. She was lonely. We needed another dog. Joe said yes and Doc joined our family. Ah, Doc. Our special needs boy who must lay between Joe and I every night before we go to bed.

Now we have 2 dogs. Two dogs who sleep on our bed, live inside, and perform no useful tasks (like bird hunting).

As Joe often says, "My wife wanted one dog. I wanted zero dogs. Now we have 2 dogs." That's marital compromise. Meeting in the middle. Reaching a win-win solution. Right? Right?

I wonder what he'd say if I asked for a king size bed so we could all fit a little more comfortably. Thanks for being open to compromise, honey.

Seriously, though, I have a rockstar husband. Today, he searched under the bed today for my missing black boot--I was sure it was under there but didn't want to bend over my huge belly to look--and didn't even grumble when he later found it in the back of our closet. AND, he bought me this new Nikon SLR, with which I took these pictures.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

pumpkin pie and Coco Puffs

Just another random news update from Casa Kaufman:
  • Pregnancy is going well...I guess. We're at 26 weeks and Pudge seems to be sitting right on my bladder and sigmoid colon. I'm glad to have a break from the heartburn, but these other discomforts were unexpected. Glucose test in 2 weeks. Until then, I am eating pumpkin pie and Coco Puffs every night.
  • Sam's good. He eats most of my pumpkin pie and Coco Puffs and makes some super funny animal sounds.
  • Doc's cardiology appointment went well. He has some mitral regurgitation, which is a fairly normal development in an older dog. Check up again in 6 months. Started on a senior dog food because he's old.
  • Schatzi got started on weight control dog food because she's fat.
  • One of the things I love about Joe is that he is not a sports fanatic. However, he seems to have forgotten that this football season and has been following the Vandals quite closely. We've been having too many sports conversations between us. He is heartbroken the Vandals were slaughtered by the Broncos last weekend. Me....not so much. (Sorry, honey).
  • On the upside, he is quite a good shot and came in 3rd at his pistol match this weekend!
  • You may have noticed we haven't had any new pictures up lately. That's because we got a Nikon SLR for our Christmas/Valentine/birthday presents and are still playing with it. Hopefully, more pictures this weekend.
And, that's the news from Casa Kaufman, where the men shoot nice groupings, the women whine about pregnancy, and the child is above average.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Lexicon of toddlerhood

Sometimes, I feel like a broken record:
  • Walking feet, please.
  • Sit on your bottom.
  • If you throw food, you'll be all done.
  • Keep it in your mouth.
  • Use your words, please.
  • Gentle touch. Schatzi/Doc doesn't like it when you hit/pull ears/climb on them.
  • Ooh...stinky feet!
  • What does the monkey/fish/snake/kitty say?
  • Look! A squirrel!
  • I like your kisses.
  • Hold hands, please.
  • Thank you for sharing.
  • Toliet paper is not for Sam.
  • If you touch the stove, you'll have to leave the kitchen.
  • Careful on the stairs.
  • Where's Sam? Oh, there's Sam. (Hide & seek or peek-a-boo is his favorite game).
What do you say all day to your kids?

Monday, November 16, 2009

getting ready for baptism

Save the date! Pudge is going to be baptized April 11, 2010 at St. James' in Lewiston. It'll be at 7:30am mass (yeah, we never learn). So, we've been making the appropriate arrangements.

For you non-Catholic readers out there, godparents and parents have to take a class to prepare for their role in their child's baptism. Three and a half years ago, Team Eddy and Joe & I took a class to prepare for Noah's baptism. Certification was good for 3 years and, I have to say, we've gotten a lot of mileage out of that one class: 4 babies baptized in 3 years...whoo hoo!

However, all good things eventually come to an end...or expire...and we now have to repeat the class. I called the local baptism coordinator and signed up for the class. She also kindly reminded me that presiders often required out-of-town parents to submit a letter from their local priest, stating they are practicing Catholics who are in good standing with the Church.

What does this mean?!?

And are Joe and I included in this definition?!?

Our letter might look something like this:

To whom it may concern,
Jen and Joe Kaufman are members of Idaho Falls Catholic Community. However, in response to your inquiry regarding their standing, I can only provide the following description.

Jen and Joe attend Mass regularly. Frequently, they show up late, dragging a very loud toddler. Instead of paying attention or praying, they can be found reading board books, stacking blocks, feeding loud toddler, or dancing in the pew while they sing along with the choir. They don't remember to tithe regularly and usually forget their envelopes. Their son cries on the way to Communion. Other parishioners seem to have trouble focusing when the Kaufman family sits next to them.

We give them an A for effort, though, and recommend you baptize their second child. They need all the help they can get.

Sincerely,
Idaho Falls Catholic Community

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Monday, November 09, 2009

Saturday, November 07, 2009

25 weeks

We took some belly pictures today with Joe's film camera. Here's a sweet picture with my 2 babies...and the stretch marks Sam gave me, as well as the new ones Pudge is passing along. I was huge with Sam. You'd think my skin had stretched as far as it could go! But, no...apparently, babies can't share the same stretch marks. Thanks, kiddos.Last week, I saw a patient. She's bipolar and lacks an internal filter, but we've been seeing each other for several years now and I'm used to it. She said, "Jen, I feel awful. I'm so bloated I look like I'm nine months pregnant. Well, not like you when you were nine months pregnant, but you know, like normal nine months pregnant." Yes. I was big with Sam. I know, I know.

just don't call me late for dinner

Joe likes to tell a story about a boy who ate a lot. Finally, his mother said, "Son, that's it. I can afford to feed you, but I just can't afford to keep you full." What a sad existence...never being full. I laughed...at the time.

Meanwhile, Sam has always been an eater. One friend asked how I got him to eat his vegetables and my response: "I put it in front of him." What do I do when he doesn't like something? "Well, I've never really encountered that problem."

A few months ago, the daycare ladies joked that they'd have to start charging us extra since Sam ate twice as much as any kid in his class.

Lately, our morning routine consists of getting Sam a sippy of milk. After he takes a few slugs, then he begins to sign "eat" emphatically and we feed him breakfast. A few weeks ago, Joe was dropping him off at daycare and mentioned he'd eaten a lot for breakfast.

Daycare: You feed him BEFORE he gets here?
Joe: Yeah. He wouldn't make it. Sometimes, he snacks in the car, too.
Daycare: Oh. We feed him breakfast, too.
Joe: Oh.
Daycare: And, then when the second group of kids arrive for breakfast, we have to feed him again or else he cries.
Joe: Oh.

And, as soon as he walks in the door in the evening, he grabs my hand and pulls me into the kitchen, signing "Eat!".

Sam, we can afford to feed you, but I'm not sure how much longer we can afford to keep you full. You might have to get an after-school job to help pay the grocery bill.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Doc updates

Doc and I both had check ups today.
  • DOC
  • Was scheduled to have his teeth cleaned and mole on his eye removed today, but the vet found a new heart murmur that wasn't there 4-6 weeks ago.
  • $200 later, we found out his heart is enlarged and is causing some tracheal deviation. He has some increased pulmonary markings on chest xray. Heart worm testing is negative.
  • We're taking him to a cardiologist in Boise.
  • (Schatzi was bummed that she missed all the action and protested loudly at not being invited on this trip...sorry, sista).
  • JEN & PUDGE
  • I was up frequently last night with Braxton-Hicks contractions that were strong enough to wake me up, so I made an OB appointment for today.
  • Fortunately, my cervix is still closed, so they really are just Braxton Hicks.
  • My blood pressure is a little high (123/87), but my weight gain is right on track for 24 1/2 weeks.
  • He told me to take it a little easier. I'm sorry...if I took it any easier, I'd be a slug. Really, I don't do much...other than chase Sam. Hhhmmm....chasing Sam IS pretty rigorous.
And that's the news from Casa Kaufman, where the men are hardworking, the women put their feet up and the child is above average.

Monday, November 02, 2009

happy halloween!

Sam had a great Halloween...or rather the day before Halloween. Friday, we dressed up our Baby Giraffe and sent him off to party it up at daycare. He had a good time once his friend, Hector, took off his Spiderman mask; before that, he was a little freaked out.

That afternoon, Joe took Sam to my office for some trick-or-treating. He's usually a little shy at the office but once he realized that people wanted to give him candy, he warmed right up. Then, we stopped by my roomie, Heather's, house and spilled water all over her floor, terrorized her dog, and ate a granola bar. All in all, a successful Halloween.

trike


Sunday, November 01, 2009

double barreled slingshot

The underwear bandit strikes again. Did you know bras are perfect for looping around your neck and loading the cups full of your cars? You didn't? Oh. You were missing out.

My dad and grandpa used to call them "double barreled sling shots" and, as an embarrassed preteen, I always wondered why. Now, I'm pretty sure it wasn't a euphemism, but that they actually used bras as double barreled sling shots.

Life with boys is always, always an educational experience.